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Gaming History You Should Know – Do Amiibo Work at Super Nintendo World January 29, 2023

Posted by Maniac in Gaming History You Should Know, Uncategorized.
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Super Nintendo World is about to open at Universal Studios Hollywood and people are already coming back with videos about their experiences. It looks absolutely incredible.

As we saw with Universal Studios Japan, the new Hollywood Super Nintendo World will feature interactive components for guests to manipulate based upon an exclusive piece of merchandise called a Power Up Band. This Band, when linked with the Universal Studios Hollywood App, will allow you to keep track of your in-park activities. The Band even includes Amiibo functionality that can even work with the Nintendo Switch (depending on what character band you purchase).

So if the Power Up Band is an Amiibo, does that mean that Amiibos could work in Super Nintendo World? A freaking genius, who I’ve known better by his internet title of Spazz Master of the YouTube Channel Theme Snark, decided to conduct an experiment while visiting Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Hollywood.

Gaming History You Should Know – History of Mortal Kombat Commercials November 6, 2022

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Happy Sunday, welcome back to Gaming History You Should Know, where we highlight some of the best documentaries across the web that discusses game history. In 1991, Mortal Kombat released onto arcades across the country and completely swept gamers away with its combination of photo-realistic sprites and violent fatalities. Many sequels and spin offs would follow and thirty years later the franchise is still going strong.

Starting in the mid-90s, Midway produced home console ports of the original arcade games. These ports would honestly sell themselves based on the goodwill of the original arcade experiences, but Midway would still put an incredible amount of money into producing some unique television commercials for them. How wild were they? YouTube Channel ScorePN produced this great video looking back on them. Check it out!

Mortal Kombat games are out now on multiple platforms.

Gaming History You Should Know – The Year of Luigi October 23, 2022

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Welcome back to a new Gaming History You Should Know, where we highlight some of the best independently produced game history content from across the web. 2013 was a turning point year for Nintendo. It marked the beginning of the first full year the 3DS and Wii U were on the market together. Pokemania was about to begin its second renaissance with the announcement of the Generation VI games, Pokémon X and Pokémon Y, and a certain character that was always in his brother’s shadow was about to step out in a big way.

2013 was officially Nintendo’s Year of Luigi. It started with the launch of the incredible Luigi’s Mansion Dark Moon for the 3DS, and continued with more games like Dr. Luigi U and New Super Luigi U. I would be there for all of it, and I remember it playing a huge role in cementing my love for Nintendo games. However, the YouTube Channel Jonii did a fantastic chronicle of the whole year and brought up some things that even I missed out on. If you’re a fan of Nintendo history you should give this a watch.

Gaming History You Should Know – Video Game Animatronics September 18, 2022

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Hope you all are enjoying your Sunday. Welcome back to Gaming History You Should Know, where we highlight some of the best independently created history videos across the web on a variety of gaming sources. As a lover of theme parks, I know there can be nothing more immersive to see in a theme park ride than a great animatronic. If you’re unaware of the concept, an anamorphic is essentially a preprogrammed robot designed to resemble a real-life character. Due to the cost and difficulty required to create them, animatronics typically appear in theme park rides and attractions. The first known example was Walt Disney’s recreation of President Lincoln for the 1964 World’s Fair. Currently, the best animatronic I can think of in operation is the one of Rocket Raccoon in Guardians of the Galaxy Mission Breakout at Disney’s California Adventure. That said, the to-scale King Kong Universal Studios Florida made for the defunct Kongfrontation ride holds a special place in my heart.

The guys over at Fastpass Facts, which is a great reference for theme park animatronic history, did a great video on the known history of animatronics of characters made famous in video games. Let’s take a look!

Gaming History You Should Know – History of Fatal Fury September 12, 2022

Posted by Maniac in Gaming History You Should Know, Uncategorized, Week of Neo-Geo.
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I know what you’re thinking. It’s not Sunday and we already talked about the Neo-Geo. So what gives? Well, we revealed we’ll be celebrating the history of the NEO-GEO platform on the site throughout the week. Today, we’ll be talking about one of the most recognized game franchises on the NEO-GEO platform, Fatal Fury.

Across the web I found three different documentary series I believe could be considered the definitive history lessons on the franchise. Rather than decide which one you should watch, I decided to highlight every one of them and let you decided for yourselves which you think is the best.

First off, we‘re going to highlight the work of Matt McMuscles, the YouTube Channel most known for the What Happened? series. He’s also an enormous fan of the Fatal Fury franchise and did a great documentary on the series that everyone should watch.

Next we’re going to be highlighting another great YouTube channel, Thorgi’s Arcade. In the second episode of his series on Fighting Games, he was asked by his fans to cover Fatal Fury. Give it a watch!

Last up, we want to highlight the work of the NeoGeoNow, an incredible YouTube channel focused on the beloved platform. He produced a three-episode documentary on the franchise, focusing on a new era with each episode. I’m sure we’ll be featuring more of this channel’s work later on this week.

Hope you’re enjoying our week on the Neo-Geo! More content will be coming throughout the week!

Gaming History You Should Know – History of the NEO-GEO September 11, 2022

Posted by Maniac in Gaming History You Should Know, Uncategorized, Week of Neo-Geo.
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Last month, the team over at SNK announced they will be reviving one of the most beloved dormant 2D fighting franchises in gaming history, Fatal Fury. For those of you who don’t know very much about the Fatal Fury franchise, be aware that you are in good company. The games were originally developed for a platform meant exclusively for the arcade market.

Please remember that during the early to mid 90s arcades were back in a big way. While home consoles were available with platforms like the NES, SNES and Sega Genesis, arcade machines were still able to produce superior graphics and sound. Many gaming companies of the day including SEGA, Midway and Atari, strived to make the best looking games they could using custom arcade hardware. Only later, if the game was an arcade success, would a port be considered for home console release. Sadly, due to the fact the gaming experience developed on custom arcade hardware could not be completely replicated on the consoles of the day, these ports could not be completely accurate to the arcade experience, and gamers knew it. Because of that, the business of an arcade was booming once again!

However, while arcades were making good profits at the time, new arcade machines were expensive, and many venues would settle for converting the existing cabinets of unpopular titles to free up space and save on cost for newer titles. While this was a great practice for arcades, it had many downsides. It was difficult to revert existing machines back to their earlier state if the newer game they replaced wasn’t as popular as the older game. Then, a company called SNK decided to do something about that.

SNK developed a top of the line arcade cabinet which was capable of playing a wide range of arcade games. How did it work? It wasn’t that dissimilar an experience to changing out the game cartridges on a Genesis or NES console. This gave arcade owners the chance to easily rotate the game offerings on their game floors, as well as saved them countless dollars in not having to repurchase new hardware every time a new title would be released by SNK. This platform would become known as the NEO-GEO.

How fondly remembered is the NEO-GEO these days? Here’s an incredible music video made a decade ago by Nathan Barnett as his character Keith Apicary.

First up, I want to re-highlight the work of YouTube Channel, Wrestling with Gaming, which has always been able to produce incredible documentaries about gaming history other people may not even remember. If you wanted to see a NEO-GEO documentary on the platform that is so good it might as well have been broadcasted on tv, start here.

Next up, I’d like to highlight the retrospectives of the legendary PatMan QC. His work has always been to create reference quality retrospectives on arcade games and game platforms. He goes really into depth on showcasing the games released for the platform, and just how many platforms are currently out there on the wild. Give it a watch!

Also, for those of you who may fondly remember the best days of G4, you probably remember the show Icons. It detailed the history of a wide range of gaming franchises and platforms. They dedicated an entire episode to the rise and fall of the NEO-GEO and it would be a shame for me to not include it here.

If you’re interested in more about the NEO-GEO, I have great news. We are planning to dedicate multiple articles this week to the venerable platform. Hope you all enjoy!

If you would like to see Nathan’s NEO-GEO cabinet for yourself, last I checked it was still operating at the Funspot in New Hampshire.

Gaming History You Should Know – The History of Rogers: The Musical April 1, 2022

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Happy April Fool’s Day! No one could ever forget where they were during the events of the Battle of New York, where the Earth survived its first-ever alien invasion due to the heroic intervention of a Billionaire, a Norse God, The World’s Greatest Archer, The World’s Greatest Assassin, a gamma-irradiated supergenius, and a WWII-era super soldier. We’ve come to know them as The Avengers and for the past decade they’ve been Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, capable of fighting the battles we never could. Personally, I’ve lost track of the amount of times they’ve saved the world, either individually or as a group, so you’ll forgive me for glossing over their reputation. I for one am just grateful for their service.

Following the events of The Blip and The Battle of Earth, which saw the tragic deaths of Iron Man, Black Widow and Captain America, The Avengers have all but dissolved. In the time since the Battle of Earth, video game adaptations of The Avengers’ exploits continue to live on with the phenomenal Ultimate Alliance series, and the upcoming Spider-Man and Wolverine games by Insomniac. But recently, there has been a different kind of adaptation over the past year, the Tony-Award Winning Megablockbuster, Rogers: The Musical. Based on the life of the late Steve Rogers, who we know as Captain America, the musical has been a tremendous success setting ticket records Broadway hadn’t seen in years.

YouTube Channel Wait in the Wings, which we’ve featured before on this website, did a phenomenal history video on one of the greatest musicals ever made. How do you create such a masterpiece when half your production staff disappear for five years? To say it was an Avengers-Level challenge would be an understatement.

Gaming History You Should Know – History of Computer Smartwatches March 27, 2022

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It’s Sunday and what better day to kick off the restart of GameXcess.net than to celebrate with another look back at the history of gaming! This is Gaming History You Should Know, where we highlight and share some of the best independently produced content on the history of gaming.

Nowadays, everyone is rocking some type of computer watch, be it an Apple Watch or Gear device. Most of these have full color displays, are capable of wireless data transmission, and keep track of time, alarms, appointments, and even health biometrics. Some of them are even able to play games! (Apple Watch gamers, I recommend Lifeline, Lifeline: Silent Night, and Cosmos Rings as must-play games!)

However, before the Apple Watch found its way on nearly everyone’s wrist, there were many other attempts, some by major companies, to sell computer watches to consumers’. So where did all of this begin, at least as far as consumers are concerned? Fear not, YouTube Legend Techmoan has us covered with a look at what I’m pretty sure is the first consumer level computer watch. It was not cheap, and it was likely meant to be used by wealthy pilots, lawyers and other businessmen, but it had incredible features and the ability to do time-based calculations that I haven’t even seen modern smartphones capable of doing! I present…the HP-01!

Unfortunately the HP-01 was way before my time. When I was growing up, I fondly remembered the classic CASIO wrist calculator watches my father would never go anywhere without. In the days before I got my first Game Boy, the fact my dad could do calculations on his wrist was something incredible. While I did eventually get a CASIO of my own, I had no idea CASIO and other companies like them released several revisions of LCD watches with a bit more of a gaming focus. Seriously.

YouTube channel Nostalgia Nerd, who I remember fondly for his knowledge of British Microcomputers, produced this great look at some of the more obscure calculator watches. Some of these just blew my mind with how they were able to innovate with the tech of the time. Heck, some of these used infrared transmitters to not just swap information, but to play multiplayer games against each other. Check it out!

Finally, I wanted to talk about one of the most obscure designs for a watch that harkened back to the days of Palm. Now that Palm figured out the most basic functions a tech enthusiast needed on the go (calendar, address book, clock, alarms), the watch maker TIMEX made the evolutionary step to put a PDA in a high-end watch. To sync, you merely needed some software that could transmit your settings and features through your CRT’s blanking signal (or a separate transmitter if you used a laptop). Sound insane? YouTube channel LGR has that part covered.

Gaming History You Should Know – Video Game Lost Media January 9, 2022

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It’s Sunday, and that means it’s time for us to once again discuss Gaming History You Should Know. Recently, I’ve been impressed by the deep documentaries produced by YouTube Channels like BlameitonJorge and All Things Lost, where they have gone into deep searches for obscure media. In fact, we even did our own lost media search last week. However, I’m sure you’ve seen that there have been much more of video game related content that is considered lost. This title can be bestowed on content that has either been finished and withheld from release or released before the opportunity for archiving

First off, we’re going to highlight one of the biggest franchises in the world, Pokémon. Due to the fact it has been releasing games, movies, toys, television shows and spin-off games for twenty-five years. YouTube Channel PaPaSec has created what is probably one of the tightest videos I’ve seen about the most well-known Pokémon lost media. Check it out!

Next up, we’re going to highlight the work of the adorable YouTube Channel Sakura Stardust. In this video, she talks about some of the most obscure lost Pokémon media. How obscure is some of this? I’ve been following Pokémon for years and I hadn’t even HEARD of some of this stuff. Enjoy.

Moving on from Pokémon, let’s talk about another classic game franchise, Sonic the Hedgehog. YouTube Channel All Things Lost, one of the best Lost Media channels on the web, has us covered. He highlights some of the lost media and incomplete Sonic games that have not been archived. Sonic X-Treme is not featured, as it has been found.

So that was just the tip of the iceberg for some video game content that is currently considered lost. I’m sure in the future we will have another article like this, so until next time, Happy New Year!

Gaming History You Should Know – Springboard: The First Smartphone December 19, 2021

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I know what you’re thinking, we already had a Gaming History You Should Know earlier in the week. Merry Christmas, here’s a bonus article that was too good to save for later!

Back in the late 90s and early 00s, Portable Digital Assistants (PDAs) were the go-to option for people who needed a digital device on their person. A PDA, like the famous Palm Pilot, could keep digital notes, addresses, schedule, and some of the later models were even capable of mobile e-mail. However, unlike today’s smartphones (which can also do all of that) you couldn’t make a call with a PDA. If you wanted to make a call on the go, you’d need to pull your cell phone out of a different pocket to make that call.

The original founders of Palm knew that the future of PDAs would require the ability to make calls. However, Palm’s owners and the cell phone providers at the time disagreed, preferring to keep business as usual until time itself ended. So, Palm’s owners left the company and formed a new one, Handspring. The rest of that story is the subject of today’s history lesson.

The guys over at The Verge just produced this fantastic documentary on the history of Handspring. In it, they interview some of the company founders, dig deep into the products the company released, and talk about the enduring legacy of the smartphone. Check it out!